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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2014 2:51 am 
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Joined: Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:29 am
Posts: 6
I’ve owned a Tandem Island and a Trailex SUT-350-AIT trailer for a couple of months. Although I did quite a lot of research on this forum before purchasing the trailer, after living with it and making a number of tweaks, I thought I would pass along some of my thoughts that may benefit other trailer newbies.

SUT-350-AIT vs SUT-350-S: The tongue or main beam of the “AIT” is 15’6” long while the “S” is 18’6”. I think the longer length is beneficial – you’ll have less boat hanging out the rear end. I copied Sun E Sailor’s cradle placement (he has the “S”) and to match his dimensions, I had to move the boat way forward – my bow is 6” behind the hitch ball.

Lowering the boat on the trailer: Initially, I had a hard time retrieving the boat from a ramp because I had to lift the bow onto the trailer. Normally, the wheel frame is mounted below the tongue. However, if you look at the instructions for the SUT-350-M2 (same main components, same weight capacity), you will see that the frame can be mounted above the tongue, lowering the boat 5” on the trailer. I made this change weeks after I built the trailer and it took a couple of hours. I left the frame assembly intact while separating it from the tongue. I then “threaded” the frame through the rear of the trailer after removing the rear cradle. This has made retrieving much easier.

Three vs Two cradles: I went with three and have no regrets. Again, I largely copied Sun E Sailor's cradle spacing.

Tires/wheels: The tires are small, but top quality. They require 90 PSI! The wheels have a well-engineered lube system.

Rear light placement: I like the placement on the rear of the tongue, like the “S”.
Winch: The Trailex winch is really low-geared and takes forever to hand crank. I removed the handle and use an 18V drill to crank. The standard bow stop did seem a bit weak to me (in fairness, I never used it).

Harbor Freight is your friend: I bought a ½” drive click style torque wrench (a good torque wrench is essential), a spare tire/wheel (60 PSI, but fine for a spare), and a trailer jack stand, all for about $20 each with a coupon.

Remember, when towing the tongue should be level. Etrailer.com has a wide assortment of drop and riser ball mounts. My tow car is a sports sedan and I needed a 5” rise, even after lowering the tongue.

Overall, the like the trailer - it tows effortlessly. Small improvements like LED lighting and endcaps for the cradle crossbars would be nice.

One last point. Med-Tech Resources has great haka spine boards for $100. They float, have pins and come in a variety of colors to match your Hobie. I use HellermanTyton SpeedyTies (high strength reusable zip ties) to attach them. Works great.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2014 10:01 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 7:53 am
Posts: 299
Location: Palm City, Florida
GaryInWI,
Good analysis, glad it all worked out well for you.
Quote:
..., if you look at the instructions for the SUT-350-M2 (same main components, same weight capacity), you will see that the frame can be mounted above the tongue, lowering the boat 5” on the trailer.
I didn't know you could do that - clever. I'm sure it made loading and unloading a lot easier.

_________________
Sun E Sailor
Ezra Appel
Palm City, Florida
2014 Tandem Island


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2014 2:45 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 10:18 am
Posts: 22
Location: Coastal Mississippi
sun E sailor wrote:
GaryInWI,
Good analysis, glad it all worked out well for you.
Quote:
..., if you look at the instructions for the SUT-350-M2 (same main components, same weight capacity), you will see that the frame can be mounted above the tongue, lowering the boat 5” on the trailer.
I didn't know you could do that - clever. I'm sure it made loading and unloading a lot easier.


I'm going to take a look at that also. The ramp I mostly launch from has a smaller slope than seems typical. So when my car's rear wheels are touching the water, the back cradle [I have 2] is still 2-3 inches out of the water. No problem to launch but, at retrieval I do have to work at getting the bow up on the cradle. This could make things much easier. Good catch mate!


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